Talent Manager Charged in L.A.

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Nicholas Roses, a 21-year-old talent manager based in Studio City, Calif., has been charged with multiple misdemeanor criminal charges in connection with an alleged talent-service scam operation that targeted minors, the Los Angeles City Attorney's Office announced Tuesday.

Roses and his company, Roses Entertainment Group, face seven misdemeanor counts each, including three counts of operating an advance-fee talent representation service, one count of not filing a required $50,000 bond with the state, and one count of failing to use written contracts for artists. If convicted, Roses could be sentenced to as long as seven years in jail and fined as much as $70,000.

Prosecutors learned of Roses through three Ohio-area parents who met the manager last year at a workshop in the Buckeye State. On Roses' advice, the parents and their children—ages 6, 13, and 14—moved to Los Angeles and signed up for the manager's weeklong industry "boot camp," which took place in August and cost roughly $3,000 per child.

The parents contacted Deputy City Attorney Mark Lambert, who is prosecuting the case, in January of this year to register complaints regarding the camp. The parents claimed that the camp was poorly organized, with participants as old as 62, and that Roses failed to provide adequate seating, food, water, and breaks. According to prosecutors, several children involved became ill, with one girl developing swollen lungs, hives, and rashes.

Roses is being charged under the 2009 Krekorian Talent Scam Prevention Act, named for current Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Krekorian, who authored the legislation while a member of the state Assembly. In a written statement, Krekorian said the law "has proved to be invaluable" to local prosecutors.

"The act provides the tools they need to go after fraud artists who prey on children and others who are lured by promises of stardom and fame," Krekorian said. "I applaud the tremendous work of the City Attorney's Office—and especially Deputy City Attorney Mark Lambert—for once again helping to protect our most vulnerable residents and restoring hope to those whose dreams were swindled away."